The fast-bowler was adamant that the players should decide if they want to go on a particular tour or not
Bangladesh’s right-arm fast-bowler Mashrafe Mortaza, in a press conference on Saturday, defended the decision of wicketkeeper-batsman Mushfiqur Rahim, who has been vocal about his decision to not tour Pakistan.
The fast-bowler was adamant that the players should decide if they want to go on a particular tour or not.
“I hundred per cent respect Mushfiqur’s decision. He got the option from the board – someone can skip the tour if he does not wish to go. When the team management or the selectors sit with the players, they need to ask every single player if he is willing to go. If I am considered in the team, I will also let them know if I will go or not,” Mashrafe said.
The 36-year-old stressed that it was the duty of every player to consider the board’s final decision.
“I don’t know what comes next [after the Zimbabwe series]. I will be there whenever the team needs me. I always feel this – the board is our guardian. It will take a decision on us, thinking not once, twice, or thrice, but ten times. It is our duty to consider the board’s decision final,” he concluded.
Earlier, Rahim remained adamant on his stance of not touring Pakistan for the one-off one-day International (ODI) and Test match between the two countries, scheduled to take place in Karachi next month.
The Bangladesh Cricket Board (BCB) president Nazmul Hassan had urged the star batsman to change his mind and tour Pakistan in April. However, Mushfiqur has reiterated his explanation to skip the tour.
"I had already made my stance clear on whether I will go to Pakistan or not and they [BCB] had accepted it. There was an offer from PSL and I could have submitted my name there,’’ Mushfiqur was quoted as saying to NTV on Thursday. "I did not give my name there [PSL], so they [BCB] should have shown me more respect since even after knowing the current situation I did not submit my name. Things are pretty clear and it won't change in the future. I only have good wishes for those who travel there.’’
Bangladesh felt the absence of Mushfiqur against Pakistan as they lost the three-match Twenty20 series 2-0 with one game washed out. The tourists then went down to an innings defeat in the first of the two Tests.
They will travel to Pakistan again on April 3 for one 50-over match and the second Test scheduled to be held in Karachi.
Bangladesh are keen to do well against Pakistan in the second Test, which is part of the ICC Test Championship.